Hello my name is Jasmine Simmons, and I am entering my Senior Year at the University of Michigan-Dearborn. I am currently studying to become a Special Education Teacher, and I love it. However, I didn’t always want to study what I am studying now. In fact, I remember thinking that if GOD told me that He wanted me to become a special education teacher I would ‘run to Nineveh.’ I ended high school wanting to go to Grand Valley State University and study pre-law. I didn`t ask GOD if that is what he wanted me to do because I figured no point in asking since it was what I thought was best for me. It a good thing that GOD is all knowing, because I would have been miserable.
There is a verse in Proverbs that has sort of been my anthem, and it says, “In her heart a (wo)man plans her course but it is the LORD that directs her steps ….”. This has been the story of my life. I planned to study pre-law, and I swore that I would never be a teacher. Yet, here I am studying to become the very thing I absolutely refused to be. GOD didn’t ever tie me down and force me to become something that I didn’t want to. Instead, HE patiently revealed to me the gifts and talents that He had placed in me. He brought to memory all the times that as a young girl I would play school with my sisters and absolutely love it. He showed me that all the gifts and abilities that He placed in me were those of a teacher.
One thing that I have absolutely come to love about GOD is that even though HE always knows best, and He always wants what is best, He takes the time to allow us to see and choose between HIS way and our way. He allowed me through various experiences to taste and see that He is and was and always will be good. Following GOD has allowed me to encounter other young people my age who have a similar foundation.
College has been a state of flux for me and lots of other young people. It is a time where you are re-evaluating the things that you believe and who you are. Being connected to the C.A.M.P.U.S. family and my local church family has been my anchor. When temptations or hard seasons have come, I have been able to lean on my community for strength, prayer, and encouragement. I know that the things that the devil offers can look really appealing and fun.
The world tells us that college is a time to get away from our “awful overbearing” parents and “live” life. That lie is from the devil and he always comes with a hidden cost. If you are anything like me, you enjoy having fun so connect with your local C.A.M.P.U.S family. As a part of campus, I have been on girl road trips, weekend camp stays , dinner parties, game nights and all sorts of other things. When you experience fun the way GOD wants you too there won`t be any hidden fees or holes to fall into. So get involved, spread the GOOD news of Jesus Christ and experience Joy.
On the morning of March 1910 in Dayton Ohio, The Wright brothers along with their father, Bishop Wright gathered to fly their newly invented aircraft. Though they had flown many times before, this day was different. The Wright brothers had pledged to never fly together in fears that if there was an accident and their lives were lost, the work of completing the aircraft would cease. However, now unhindered, having completed the project they were free to fly together. After the brothers finished their round, Wilbur and his aged father boarded the plane next and began to soar over the Ohio landscape. As they soared through the sky his father leaned over to say one word, “Higher Wilbur, Higher.”
What if we too, as believers realized our freedom in Christ. What if we found our chains to be broken, our fears dispelled, and the world before us as an open arena to serve God and our fellow men. What if we too aimed higher.
Last year a small group of Adventist youth sought to do just that. Gathering together early Sunday morning in the basement of a local church, though we all were from diverse backgrounds, shared one thing in common; a desire to experience God on a deeper level and share His love with others. Thus marked the conception of S.O.A.R.
Who: S.O.A.R. (School of the Adventist Remnant) is a group of Adventist youth who seek to do their best in fulfilling their God given mission and purpose to the world in earth’s final days. Driven by God’s grace we seek to learn how we can prepare ourselves and others for Christ second coming.
What: Meetings are held Sunday mornings and consist of exploring essential Bible topics; Righteousness by Faith, Hermeneutics, and Personal Spirituality to name a few. Service projects are conducted and allow members to grow together and live out their faith. Assignments are also incorporated into the curriculum to challenge members to practice and apply gained knowledge.
Why: “If God so loved us we also ought to love one another” 1 Jn 4:11
By God’s grace what started as a small group of several members has steadily grown into a broader community. As we look to continue growing this summer, prayers for our ministry would be greatly appreciated.
“Since I have attended SOAR it has completely changed they way that I view my status in the eyes of GOD. Being raised Adventist I have found that it’s really easy to become legalistic . During a study of the book of Romans I have begun to truly realize and accept that my Salvation comes by faith in Christ alone by the grace of Christ alone so that no wo(man) may boast. I have truly grown to love our early Sunday morning sessions”. Jasmine Simmons, U of M Dearborn
“I like S.O.A.R a lot because of the diversity of people. Learning a lot from different people helped me grow and see things differently from the Bible study. Sam Smith, student.
“SOAR has been a revival for me when it comes to bible study. It has pushed me to understand scripture on a deeper and more practical level. The tools I have acquired can be used throughout my life”. Daniel Barnes, Mechanical Engineer